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Thread: OptimumLap Vehicle Dynamics Simulation, Simplified.

  1. #1
    Dear FSAE friends and fans,

    In engineering projects in general and FSAE projects in particular, a common goal is improving performance. In most cases, improved performance can be achieved in many different ways. We'll then face the question What's is the best and most efficient way to improve performance?

    In the past, time and resource constraints can make it difficult to explore all different options. However, with modern computers, we are now able to model and predict the behavior of different systems via simulation for example a race car. Simulation is a great method to explore different design solutions without having to build a single physical part. Analyzing simulation results gives us a better understanding of how our race car reacts to parameter changes and we can make decisions based on data (rather than gut feelings) something Geoff outlines really well in this thread: http://fsae.com/eve/forums/a/t...25607348/m/217101453

    Recently, we asked ourselves: How come so few FSAE teams use simulation to determine what their car should look like? To determine which areas of the car to focus on? We found that the level of complexity of most readily available simulation software were so high that it required a team days if not weeks to get a first result. A common misconception is that increased complexity leads to better, more useful results (Damian Harty demonstrates in his paper "Myth of Accuracy" that this is not case).

    With OptimumLap we set out to simplify vehicle dynamic simulation to the point where anyone can get reasonably accurate and very useful results within minutes. By reducing the vehicle to its most fundamental components, we define a car with only 10 parameters. Each parameter representing a specific aspect of the car (such as engine, tires or aerodynamics). This makes it easy to identify the effect that each parameter/sub-system will have on the vehicle's performance something we believe helps you better understand what to focus your time and resources on. A simplified vehicle model however, has the downside that it doesn't allow you study the vehicle in great detail. For that we need increased fidelity, but in our experience, you have to make it useful before you make it complicated. And, with OptimumLap, the results are typically within 10% of reality.

    We have built OptimumLap to encourage you and your team, to use simulation results (engineering data) to make engineering decisions. With the built-in tools you are able to study effects of engine power, gearbox characteristics, aerodynamics, tires and mass. The results will help you define the specifications for the detailed design of different sub-systems. For example: Do you need more longitudinal or lateral grip? How much drag can you wings add before they start to negatively affect performance? Which final drive ratio minimizes the number of gear shifts (and thus the size of your pneumatic tank)? How much energy do my batteries or fuel tank have to be able to store to complete endurance?

    These are just some examples of how OptimumLap can be used and we are excited to see what types of analyses you will come up with! We are making OptimumLap available free of charge for anyone. If you want to get started already, we are currently in a beta testing phase (with the final release slated later this fall) and we invite you all to try it.

    To sign-up for the beta:
    1. Go to http://beta.optimumg.com/signup
    2. Enter the invite code: FSAELap2012 (there are only 50 invites available at this time)
    3. You will receive an email with a download link and your license key.

    That's all for now, we would love to hear your thoughts and comments. We will of course update you here, on our facebook page on our website once we have an update!

    For more information: http://beta.optimumg.com/introduction/


    Best regards,

    Vehicle Dynamics Solutions

  2. #2
    My initial impression on this is great!

    A lot of the car characterization tools/graphs teams may have available to them if they already purchased RDP (race data power). There are some added goodies however and I really like the vehicle report.

    The real winner is tying all those tools into a track simulation. Acceleration/Skidpad have always been somewhat easier to figure out times/values and other things for but being able to put it into an autocross/endurance event is something awesome.

    I got about half way through making the track for FSAEL-12 endurance and it crashed....lost everything on the track layout...and i went cross-eyed I'll get back at it, just not tonight.

    So far, another great tool from the optimum crew!
    South Dakota State University Alum
    Electrical/Daq/Engine/Drivetrain/Tire guy '09-'14

    Go big, Go blue, Go JACKS!

  3. #3
    Yep, during this pre-release period our main focus is on stability and usability, so any feedback that you guys have is definitely appreciated! You can contact us directly or you can submit feedback through the software too (just hit "F2").

    Also, inside that zip folder you have, you should also find some sample 2012 Lincoln (FSAE-West) and FSG tracks, among others. That may help you get up and running with some representative FSAE/FS Student tracks.


    Best Regards,

    Vehicle Dynamics Solutions

  4. #4
    Great! Lapsims have always been a huge concern for an FSAE team especially when deciding about major components on the design phase.... gonna give it a try!

  5. #5
    Just downloaded now. Thanks for making this available. I am commencing my own Lapsim project this coming year and hopefully this will help with some ideas.

    You wouldn't happen to have this or last years FS Silverstone tack map would you?

    Many Thanks
    Cardiff Racing
    Cardiff University


  6. #6
    Damn, already filled up!
    ODU Formula SAE

  7. #7
    Roundabout - During this prerelease/testing period we are releasing new program builds quite often. We will probably release some more invite codes as we get further into this testing period, so check back in a few days time and there may be some more here.

    Go, If you have some logged data that you'd like to pass along, we can generate a Silverstone track map for you - as long as you don't mind us releasing it as a general "Sample track".


    Vehicle Dynamics Solutions

  8. #8
    I was not able to find any tracks in the zip file. Would anyone be able to point me to where they are?

  9. #9
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    PERTH, Western Australia
    I found them in the extracted folder from the zip:
    Optimum Lap Beta Release 1.1->Sample Tracks.
    ex-UWA Motorsport

    General team member 2013-15, Vehicle Dynamics Team Lead 2012
    Project Manager 2011, Powertrain minion 2009/10

  10. #10
    Originally posted by NickFavazzo:
    I found them in the extracted folder from the zip:
    Optimum Lap Beta Release 1.1->Sample Tracks.
    I think I have a different download than you

    The zip file is named optimumLap.zip
    And when extracted the folder is OptimumLap_V1.1.0.1

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